Although the combination of lengthy shots and, in his early work, a relatively static camera has given Hou Hsiao-hsien an exaggerated reputation as a minimalist, his is above all a cinema of movement. The mobile train shot that begins Dust in the Wind, one of the key films of Taiwan’s New Cinema, generates a visceral sensation of forward momentum while also looking back to the medium’s nineteenth-century origins. Hou vividly captures the confusion of young adulthood, but maintains a clear-eyed distance on the vicissitudes of ordinary lives by repeatedly returning to the landscape imagery of the opening shots. Based on the memories of screenwriter Wu Nien-jen, Dust in the Wind is both absorptive and reflective, encouraging viewers to continually refine their understanding of preceding scenes even while immersed in the unfolding present. (Richard I. Suchenski)

The 27 January session will feature a post-screening discussion with Tony Rayns.

Filmmaker
Hou Hsiao-hsien
Country
Taiwan
Year
1986
Medium
35mm
Length
110’
Language
Mandarin, Taiwanese
Producer
Lin Teng-fei, Hsu Hsin-chih, Chang Hwa-kun
Production Company
Central Motion Picture Corp.
Sales
Center for Moving Image Arts
Writer
Wu Nien-jen, Chu T'ien-Wen
Cinematography
Lee Ping Bin
Editor
Liao Ching-Song
Sound Design
Yang Jing-An
Music
Chen Ming-Chang, Hsu Ching Chun
Cast
Chen Shufang